On the third day of the Bombay Ophthalmologists’’ Association, FOCUS 2017 silver jubilee conference, My Medical Mantra spoke with Dr Satanshu Mathur about the issue of childhood blindness.
Dr Mathur who works as a medical director and consultant with the Hi-Tech Eye Institute and Laser Centre, Uttarakhand said, “Generally blindness amongst children begins for an early age this is mostly due to congenital cataracts. A lesser known common causes which leads to loss of vision among children is corneal blindness; this means the cornea gets damaged because of malnutrition and so on. Hence eye screening in schools or at medical camps is very important as it helps diagnose the eye condition at an early stage.”
He added, “Education about malnutrition is important as it causes corneal blindness. Mother’s diet should be taken care in the rural areas, as it causes due to vitamin A deficiency.”
According to Dr Mathur, if a child is given spectacle at an early age, vision can be improved.
He pointed out that the healthy diet is going for a toss, as children are not consuming green vegetables, fruits, salads and so on. “Children in the age group of 5 to12, consume a lot of junk food. And parents aren’t aware about children and can’t control their diet habits.”
Dr Mathur explained that early exposure to the gadgets can affect the child’s vision. “A child has an access to the mobile phone, from an early stage. Mobile has a small screen and strains the eye. So instead of mobile, use laptop. As laptop is placed at a distance.”
Dr Mathur advised that “Children should avoid using mobile till the age of 7 to 8 years. A child whose age is around 3 to 4 years shouldn’t not be allowed to use a mobile phone as at that age.”